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Mocha Island Ground Frog
With little information on this rare species (including only one known photo in existence), the Critically Endangered Mocha Island Ground Frog is quickly running out of time.

Mocha Island is a small (4800 hectare) island located 32 kilometers off the coast of Chile. Just under half the island is protected as a National Reserve and administered by the Chilean protected areas agency (CONAF). The reserve is located in the center of the island, encompassing the islands’ peaks and remaining Valdivian temperate rain forest, one of the 35 recognized biodiversity Hotspots.

Mocha Island provides the only habitat in the world for the IUCN Critically Endangered Mocha Island Ground Frog (Eupsophus insularis). Very little is known of this rare species—the most recent records are of three individuals collected in August 2011. Distribution, abundance, population trends, and threats are uncertain given the lack of research and monitoring conducted on the surviving population.

It is known that the frogs depend on water streams in Mocha Island’s Valdivian temperate rain forest as their primary habitat. Habitat destruction, cattle ranching and predation by invasive species have been identified as main threats to Mocha’s endangered species. Focused surveys are needed to better document the distribution of the Mocha Frog across the island, measure impacts from current threats, and determine other potential threats to the species. No island-wide survey on this species has been conducted to date. 

Island Conservation is working to determining the distribution of the Mocha Island Ground Frog in relation to key habitat features as a critical first step towards assessing the conservation status of this poorly known species. This will inform future management action, including how and where these invasive species interact with this threatened species, and provide a baseline assessment of relative abundance necessary to determine population trends.

Mocha Island, Chile, the only home in the world to the Critically Endangered Mocha Island Ground Frog (Eupsophus insularis).

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